1000 x 90

Avery County Obituaries – Compiled Oct. 14, 2014

Helen Madeline Gray Rash (Sept. 21, 1943 – Oct. 13, 2014)

Helen Madeline Gray Rash, 71, of Newland passed away on Oct. 13, 2014 at Johnson City Medical Center.

A native of Washington, D.C., she was born Sept. 21, 1943 a daughter of the late David Charles and Lois Ethel Holden Gray. She was a member of the Buck Mountain Holiness Church and enjoyed sewing, gardening and fishing.

Along with her parents, she was preceded in death by her: brothers, Ralph and Raymond Gray.

Madeline has left to cherish her memory her: husband, Pete Rash of Linville; sons, David Rash, and his fiance, Devia Eller, of Sparta, Dan Rash, and his wife, Karen, of Jefferson; daughter, Michelle Warren, and her husband, Doug, of Newland; granddaughter, Ciera Rash of Jefferson; brother, David Gray, and his wife, Jeannie, of Linville; sisters, Linda Nelson of Newland; and Janice Winters of Elk Park.

Funeral services for Helen Madeline Gray Rash will be conducted on Thursday, Oct. 16, 2014 at 2 p.m. in the Grandfather Chapel of the Reins-Sturdivant Funeral Home. The family will receive friends from 12:00 noon Thursday prior to the services. Interment will follow in the Tanglewood Cemetery.

Words of comfort and memories may be shared with the family and viewed at www.rsfh.net. Reins-Sturdivant Funeral Home of Newland is serving the Rash family.

Edward “Bill” Ray Parsons (Jan. 31, 1931 – Oct. 10, 2014)

Edward “Bill” Ray Parsons, 83, of Hickory, went home to be with his Heavenly Father on Friday, Oct. 10, 2014, at Catawba Regional Hospice in Newton.


He was born Jan. 31, 1931, to the late Clarence Edward Parsons and Josephine “Chick” Franklin Parsons of Burke County. Ed and his wife have worshiped with Fairgrove Baptist Church since 1956. He retired from General Electric and worked in data processing for 33 years. He also served in the US Army. Ed loved his family and was a very down-to-earth man; he always had a smile on his face. His passion was his grandchildren and great-grandchildren, who fondly called him Papa. Ed loved time in the mountains with his family and spoiling his grandchildren. Sunday dinners with family always brought everyone great times. He would light up when his great grandsons, Braxton and Brody would walk through the door. Ed married his true love and best friend, Evelyn Webb, on May 3, 1954. What a wonderful life they have shared together. Ed was a great man of strong faith and he lived it daily. Ed will be greatly missed.

In addition to his parents, Ed is preceded in death by his sisters, Mary Parsons Curtis and Betty Parsons Loudermelt.

Left to cherish his memories are his wife of 60 years, Evelyn Webb Parsons; children, Johnny R. Parsons and wife, Patty R. Parsons, of Conover, and Gregory Alan Parsons of Hickory; grandchildren, Andrew R. Parsons, Jenny P. Eckard and husband, Beau, Misty Parsons, and Miranda Trivette; and great grandchildren, Braxton Eckard, Brody Eckard, Khloee Trivette and Landon Trivette.

A service of remembrance was held at 2 p.m. on Monday, Oct. 13, 2014, at Fairgrove Baptist Church in Hickory. The Rev. Neal George officiated. Burial followed at Catawba Memorial Park in Hickory. American Legion Post 16 administered military rites.

In lieu of flowers, the family has requested memorials be made to Catawba Regional Hospice: 3975 Robinson Road, Newton, NC 28658 or Rising Hope Farms: 3775 Bethany Church Road, Claremont, NC 28610.

Condolences may be made to the Parsons family by clicking to www.drumfh-conover.com.

Drum Funeral Home & Cremation Services in Conover is honored to serve the Parsons family.

Kathleen Shelton Domenico (April 11, 1952 – Oct. 10, 2014)

Kathleen Shelton Domenico, 62, of Newland passed away on Oct. 10, 2014 at her residence.

She was born April 11, 1952 a daughter of Betty Bonebright Shelton of Grandbury, Texas, and the late Donald Paul Shelton.

Kathleen was a member of St. Bernadette Roman Catholic Church where she served as Eucharistic Minister.

She retired from Holy Cross Hospital.

Along with her mother, Kathleen has left to cherish her memory her: husband, Ralph. J. Domenico of Newland; brothers, Rick Shelton of Grandbury, Texas, Randy Shelton of Lee Summit, Mo., Don Shelton of Kansas City, Mo., and one grandchild.

The family will receive friends on Monday, Oct. 13 from 6 to 8 p.m. at Reins-Sturdivant Funeral Home. Funeral services for Kathleen Shelton Domenico will be conducted on Tuesday, Oct. 14, 2014 at 10:00 am at the St. Bernadette Catholic Church with Father Gober officiating.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to: Medi Home Hospice at PO Box 1357 Newland, NC 28657.

Words of comfort and memories may be shared with the family and viewed at www.rsfh.net.

Reins-Sturdivant Funeral Home of Newland is serving the Domenico family.

Randall ‘Polecat’ Calloway, D. Oct. 9, 2014


Randall “Polecat” Calloway, 62, of Newland, passed away on Thursday, Oct. 9, 2014, at Greystone Health Care in Blountville, Tenn.

A native of Avery County, he was a son of the late James (Basil) Calloway and Lola (Edna) Benfield. He was also preceded in death by his paternal grandparents: Waits and Bonnie Calloway; and maternal grandparents: Shoner and Bessie Benfield. He loved gardening, riding horses, fishing and the fruit of all the vines. Polecat was a friend to all.

Surviving is his lifelong and forever friend, Pam Isaacs; son, Travis McKinney; brothers: Larry “Peanut” Benfield and wife, Carolyn, of High Point and James Calloway Jr. of Newland; sisters: Susie Hollifield McConnell, Vanessa Aldridge and Reba Horney and husband, Mike, all of Newland; step daughters: Deidre Morton, of Rock Hill, S.C., and Dawn Perkins and husband, Joey, of Elizabethton, Tenn.; step-grandchildren: Stephanie Morton, Cody Morton, Destiny Reed, Jay Reed, Nathan Reed and Bailee Perkins. Four nieces; four nephews; three great nieces; four great nephews and many friends also survive.

Funeral services were held on Sunday, Oct. 12, 2014, at Vale Freewill Baptist Church.

The Rev. Steve Turbyfield officiated. Burial followed in Fork Mountain Cemetery.